BAE Systems, Electronic Systems Division, Wayne, N.J., is being awarded a $7,383,414 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the acquisition of hardware, software, performance enhancements and maintenance of BAE Software Compliant Architecture Common Data Link family of products. The Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren, Va., is the contracting activity.
Integration Technologies Group Inc., Falls Church, Va., is being awarded a $20,279,774 firm-fixed-price delivery order under previously awarded contract to provide ONE-NET PC refresh hardware to various locations outside the continental U.S. locations. The government will receive the first order for desktops, notebooks or tablets for testing, inspection and approval. On government acceptance of the first unit, the contractor will deliver additional units ordered to locations specified. This two-year delivery order includes one, two-year option which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative, not-to-exceed value of this delivery order to an estimated $40,559,548. The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity.
Lockheed Martin Corp., Palm Beach, Fla., is being awarded a not-to-exceed $52,947,551 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to perform maintenance, testing and integration of the Remote Minehunting System with Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) mission modules and LCS seaframe programs. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.
Alutiiq Pacific LLC, Anchorage, Alaska; Securityhunter Inc., Baltimore, Md.; and Split Pine Technologies LLC, Tallahassee, Fla., are each being awarded an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award contract for physical security access control at Navy shore installations throughout the world, including joint bases assigned to the Navy. The maximum dollar value including the base period and two option years for all three contracts combined is $99 million. The work to be performed provides for the design, procurement, installation, integration, testing and initial training for anti-terrorism force protection (ATFP) hardware and software at Navy shore installations throughout the world, including joint bases assigned to the Navy. Securityhunter Inc., is being awarded task order (#0001) at $2,698,396 for the design, procurement installation, integration, testing and initial training for ATFP hardware and software of the General Enclave and Automated Vehicle Gate Low Volume Reeves Gate at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Lemoore, Calif. All work on this contract will be performed at Navy shore installations throughout the world, including joint bases assigned to the Navy. The Naval Facilities Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Center, Port Hueneme, Calif., is the contracting activity.
Within the next eight months, the U.S. Coast Guard is expected to move to the Defense Department’s enterprise email system, according to Rear Adm. Robert Day Jr., USCG, assistant commandant for command, control, communications, computers and information technology, and director, Coast Guard Cyber Command. The admiral gave the keynote address during the second day of the AFCEA SOLUTIONS Series – George Mason University Symposium, “Critical Issues in C4I.” Adm. Day related that even though moving to the Defense Department's enterprise email service may cost more initially in some cases, the long-term benefits to the service will mitigate and justify some of those costs.
In a similar vein, Adm. Day said he sees the Joint Information Environment (JIE) as an opportunity to resolve some of the most pressing information technology problems he faces in a future with more challenges and fewer resources. He said that the JIE will establish “enterprise-wide mandates that programs cannot ignore.”
Adm. Day said he believes the JIE will allow for more efficient system configurations and consolidation of the Coast Guard’s information technology work force. As the director of the Coast Guard Cyber Command, the admiral also is mindful that the JIE will improve his ability to control what devices are attached to the network, giving him the opportunity, for example, to stop an unauthorized USB thumb drive from being attached to a secure network computer, compromising operational security.
“Borrowing” a page from the U.S. Air Force, Adm. Day also noted that the Coast Guard is moving to the electronic flight bag, which provides the ability to put charts and other documents needed for aircraft in an Apple iPad tablet. He says doing so will save the costs of putting 300 pounds of paper in the air.
The term “big data” means different things to different people. To a bank, big data represents the ability to gain business intelligence from financial transactions. To the United States intelligence community, big data’s challenge comes in trying to sift through information from multiple environments in support of the warfighter.
John Marshall, senior information systems technologist for the Joint Staff Intelligence Directorate (J-2), Joint Chiefs of Staff, said big data includes information being captured constantly by more than 50 million mobile devices, and “the question is, how do we successfully mine through that data for those nuggets that my colleagues and I need?” He appeared on a panel, “Big Data and the Evolving Enterprise,” at the the AFCEA SOLUTIONS Series – George Mason University Symposium, “Critical Issues in C4I."
The second panel of the day focused on an examination of cloud computing. Frank Konieczny, chief technology officer, Office of Information Dominance, and chief information officer, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, reminded attendees that in his office, the promise of cloud computing is an empty one if it does not fulfill Air Force mission requirements and help airmen to meet the mission.
Fellow panelist Geoffrey Raines, a cloud infrastructure engineer for the MITRE Corporation's National Security Engineering Center, noted that significant challenges remain on the road to cloud computing in the Defense Department; among them, portability and interoperability; risks associated with data center consolidation; and managing cost expectations, which have been widely touted as a benefit of cloud computing.
Effectively dealing with data sets measured in terabytes and petabytes sometimes takes an ecosystem. And at times, that ecosystem is dependent on metadata, a sub-dataset that describes the dataset so that it can be analyzed quickly.
That’s according to Todd Myers, a big data specialist with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), who spoke at the AFCEA SOLUTIONS Series - George Mason University Symposium, "Critical Issues in C4I," on Tuesday.
Myers said that in an era when an intelligence community analyst no longer has the luxury of staring at a monitor for hours poring over a video feed searching for “that one delta that will deliver a needed clue,” properly applied metadata can provide the speed needed for what he calls “contextual resolution."
One firm that seeks to help analysts sift through big datasets is sqrrl. Ely Kahn, chief executive officer of sqrrl, said his firm relies on open source big data tools like Hadoop to provide analysis with “low latency,” the big data code for speed and efficiency. He told symposium attendees that one of the most interesting aspects of both big data and open source is that they have helped create new ways to write the applications that are being used to unlock the secrets in big data.
When it comes to the U.S. Defense Department’s Joint Information Environment (JIE), it's best to toss out old thinking about information technology programs.
“The JIE is not a program,” David DeVries, deputy chief information officer for information enterprise, Defense Department, stressed. DeVries oversees the effort to tie together the vast information technology resources of the military, providing crucial information to warfighters “at the point where they need it.”
DeVries delivered the opening keynote address at the AFCEA SOLUTIONS Series-George Mason University Symposium, “Critical Issues in C4I.”
The JIE, he said, encompasses work going on simultaneously in the realms of data center consolidation, identity and access management, and mobile. In the area of mobile, DeVries told the conference that part of making the JIE work is realizing that such devices must be managed, and policies must be set to maximize their value to the warfighters.
The SOLUTIONS conference also is set to explore big data, cloud computing, interoperability, information technology acquisition reform and mobility management. The conference continues through tomorrow at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.
U.S. soldiers are expanding the use of the Capability Portfolio Analysis Tool (CPAT) across the Army’s modernization program after its success in shifting the paradigm for conducting analysis. CPAT offers an advanced combination of modeling, simulation and optimization decision support software. Currently, the Program Executive Office Ground Combat Systems (PEO GCS) is its primary user, employing it to analyze potential scenarios as technology advances and changes occur in the global environment and the federal budget as well as other factors that could influence future purchases.
Heidi Shyu, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology, asked Sandia National Laboratories personnel to brief other Army PEOs. As a result, Sandia is working with Enterprise Information Systems to apply CPAT to complex decision-making processes.
Eventually, CPAT could be adapted to other military branches or applied to entirely different, complex decision-making processes in other large organizations.“The challenge is each organization has different things that they are managing. Conceptually you are making decisions about how you invest your money, but the details of what goes into it are very, very different,” Craig Lawton, lead for Sandia’s PEO GCS projects, says. “The sky’s the limit.”
Researchers from Sandia National Laboratories, the U.S. Army and other organizations developed the CPAT about two years ago; last year it won the Military Operations Research Society’s Richard H. Barchi Prize.